Off to Minneapolis
Just before boarding the last plane to Minneapolis, Candy and Sugar, who had come home for Christmas, pulled their younger sister into a loving hug. All three of them leaning on the others for support both emotionally and physically, never wanting to leave the serene moment of sibling love, safety and comfort.
“Don’t forget to remember me” cried Spice to her sisters as they walked down the jet bridge, quoting a Carrie Underwood song. Her sisters turned around, smiled and waved sadly as they rounded the corner.
As the plane flew over the one thousand nine hundred sixty-eight miles from Buttonwillow California to Saint-Paul Minnesota, the twins used the five and a half hours to catch up, something they had not been able to do without Spice or the rest of the Pierce clan. They talked about everything from school, to boys, to their dorm, to boys, and more boys.
“...And that has been my life without you” Sugar said as she finished summarizing her semester.
“Seriously? Not a single fraternity or sorority party?” speculated Candy.
“Candy, that is you. That is part of the reason you needed to do last semester again. You can party on Friday from eight to ten at night, but then you have to come home and do your homework because I am not going to do it for you this year!”
“Yes mother.” Candy replied sarcastically.
The two girls laughed and joked with each other until they got into their cab, when they decided it was time to call Spice.
“Spice! Girl what up sista?! We miss you little Sis” the twins exclaimed at the same time.
“Hey! The sky that is what’s up. I am already counting down the days to when you two come home for summer!” chuckled Spice.
The three sisters talked, reminisced, and laughed until nine at night in Minneapolis. Candy and Sugar then bade their sister goodbye and started to unpack Candy’s things. Later both girls went around the floor to introduce Candy to the RA, and the rest of the girls.
School started two days after Candy and Sugar arrived at Macalester.
Having been at college for a semester already, Sugar had a group of friends who had inside jokes that make no sense to people who weren’t there at the joke’s origin event, a.k.a Candy. Because of these jokes Candy felt excluded and lonely.
Why can’t I be included in Sugar’s friend group? Can’t we all make our own set of inside jokes? They could keep theirs but we could have ours as well. Sugar does not even notice that I am not being included because she is so absorbed in her inside jokes! Where is my shy, twin, Sugar?
In the afternoons the sisters used to hang out in their room doing homework, but they would constantly be interrupted by Sugar’s phone ringing.
“Hey, Sugar? Can you explain the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle to me?”
“Umm. Yeah sure no problem. It is when the position and the velocity of an electron ca-... I am so sorry I have to answer this. ... Hey Chloe! What’s up?... The Creative Writing homework is to write seven pages single spaced based on the prompt from this morning. … The prompt was write about a pair of magical shoes…. No, I am not doing anything right now. Yeah, I will meet you guys at the library in a few. Great! Bye!”
“Can you finish explaining the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle to me before you leave?”
“Can’t you just look it up for yourself? Fine! I will just give it to you just this once. The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle is that the position and the velocity of an electron cannot both be measured exactly, at the same time, even in theory” Sugar said as she sprinted out the door to meet her friends at the library.
“Thanks for the help and for inviting me Sugar!” Candy said semi-gratefully to herself as her sister had already closed the door with an echoing slam.
Why can’t MY phone be blown up with calls and texts asking ME to go hang out with people? I am the social butterfly. ME, not Sugar. Or at least I used to be. Maybe our thoughts of college together are not as good as we thought it would be. I wonder what life would be like now if I had not flunked second semester of twelfth grade last year and had to redo it this year. If I had not had to repeat, could we have still been BFFs and in the same friend group instead of the being “The-one-with-a-social-life-outside-of-class-and-homework” and “The other”. Where did the old Sugar and Candy duo go? Sugar-free candy is never good.
For Sugar the semester flew by, but for Candy it dragged on and on. Chemistry faded into English into History, and Spanish into Math. Sugar would no longer help her with her homework, therefore, Candy’s breakfast, lunch and dinner became came one meal. On a good day a snack would be consumed. Slowly yet surely the sisters drifted apart from one another. They would only see each other for thirty seconds before Sugar would run off to her 10:00 am Biology class, and Candy would lumber off to the showers, and then in the evenings right before bed. Both girls gradually forgot about their little sister back home in Buttonwillow, who sat everyday anxiously awaiting the phone to ring at precisely 7:30 pm, only to be let down day after day.
Days turned to weeks and weeks into months. Periodic tests were replaced by the ever-daunting final exams. Everyone at Macalester was petrified by the prospect of the finals. Even Sugar, who was never scared by a test or final in her life, was mortified.
Some students choose to study frantically in preparation, and some slack off even if they know that they shouldn’t, and just wing it. In high school Sugar would have been the studying one and Candy would be at the mall not even thinking about the upcoming exams, but in college the roles were reversed. Candy was studying so hard she thought her head might literally explode, and Sugar was studying (more like chit-chatting) with her new friends in the dining hall.